Photo Information

U.S. Marines with 1st Marine Aircraft Wing (MAW), perform COVID-19 prevention measures during Exercise Driven Thermite 21 at Marine Corps Air Station Futenma, Okinawa, Japan, Nov. 19, 2020. This exercise ensures that 1st MAW personnel are ready to plan and execute air operations in the Indo-Pacific by operating in a simulated environment. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by SSgt. Ronald Spotswood)

Photo by Sgt. Ronald Spotswood

1st MAW Tests Battle Staff During Exercise Driven Thermite

13 Nov 2020 | Courtesy Asset 1st Marine Aircraft Wing

OKINAWA, Japan –Hundreds of Okinawa-based U.S. Marines with 1st Marine Aircraft Wing (MAW) kicked-off Driven Thermite 21, a Wing level Command Post Exercise to validate the Aviation Combat Element (ACE) Battle Staff’s ability to plan and execute aviation operations within Indo-Pacific Command.

U.S. Marines from Marine Wing Headquarters Squadron 1, Marine Air Control Group 18, Marine Aircraft Group 12, Marine Aircraft Group 36 and Marine Aircraft Group 24 continue to focus on unit proficiency, ensuring their capabilities are ready for any crisis. Driven Thermite employs the Tactical Air Command Center (TACC), from which the ACE Battle Staff plans, directs and supervises the six functions of Marine aviation. The exercise will consist of a series of validation events to include simulated control of aircraft and missiles, aviation logistics and ground support drills and in-depth air operations planning and execution. Incorporating personnel from 3rd Marine Division and III Marine Expeditionary Force (MEF) improves integration across the Marine Air-Ground Task Force (MAGTF).

Driven Thermite marks the first time 1st MAW employs the latest version of Common Aviation Command and Control System (CAC2S), the command and control system that connects radars, Air Command and Control nodes, aircraft and weapon systems. The system enhances 1st MAW’s ability to leverage MAGTF and joint information and weapons systems.

Exercises like Driven Thermite ensure 1st MAW personnel are ready to plan and execute air operations as the ACE of the MAGTF in the Indo-Pacific. Driven Thermite will confirm every unit’s proficiency throughout the 1st MAW by operating in an integrated scenario and simulation environment. This type of training emphasizes the importance of the “train how you fight” concept in the Marine Corps, while utilizing different subordinate commands within III MEF.

Driven Thermite is one exercise in a series to evaluate the employment of 1st MAW into the future.

The point of contact for any questions is 1st MAW Marine Corps Communication Strategy and Operations Office at

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